Start Resisting: A Buyer’s Guide to The Best Resistance Bands For Building Muscle

Two years ago, the worst possible thing happened:

I tore my ACL and meniscus in a dancing accident (it sounds weird, I know, but let me explain).

You might think of such injuries occurring with sports athletes in soccer, basketball, or football, but dance?

It doesn’t seem that dangerous.

But it can be.

Let’s just say, I didn’t land so gracefully.

Any injury sucks, but regaining strength through re-training my body after surgery was an interesting process (tough and long), it was awesome to feel my body come back to its original strength.

Plus it introduced me to a different take on bodyweight training (that I would have never considered using before):

best resistance bands
Well, mainly Tim Under Tension does!


Enter:

Resistance bands.

“Super set sum up”: Best Resistance bands for the Average Joe/Jane/Beginner/Parent You!

  1. Black Mountain Resistance Band Set (Budget/Beginner)
  2. Bodylastics Anti-Snap Resistance Band Set (Budget/Beginner)
  3. Resistance Band Set (Athletic Series 11 pc.)
  4. Master of Muscle Shred Bands (Anit-Snap/Budget)
  5. Sport2People Resistance Bands (Physical Therapy/Budget)

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. At no cost you, of course 🙂

These are in no particular order. Just pick one above!

What Can They Do For You?

They can leverage your body for more tension and flexibility, which allows to just move better…

Plus, training with resistance increases your overall muscle strength, and who doesn’t want a more lean body.

2 Quick questions:

  • Do resistance bands help lose weight? Of course!

Doing any kind of “time under tension” based exercises (with or without bands) will help you lose weight.

When I say weight, I mean fat.

Please try not to go solely off a scale to determine you r results because you have to factor in your organs, your bones and your body as a whole.

  • Can you get big with resistance bands?

Let me answer that with another question, how big? It depends on what you would call big.

For us 40+-year-olds, we ain’t trying to be bodybuilders. You want that “big”, got to a gym.

I think you can make gains easily with resistance bands with progressions and time under tension.

Got injured?

These are excellent tools for those who are injured and need rehab and trying to regain strength and mobility through physical therapy.

Side note benefit:

You can throw them into your bag, so if you’re busy like me (and who are we kidding, we’re all busy!) you can bust these bands out when you have downtime (on lunch, or if you want to be that person at the grocery store checkout line).

I learned about resistance bands through my physical therapist (who I adore for getting me back into dancing shape, plus she inspired me to try and get stronger.

Yes:

She told me straight up, “your weak.” This journey is still a work in progress.

However:

If you don’t have a physical therapist at the ready (and most of us don’t), but you’re interested in adding these bands to your at-home workout routine, I’ve reviewed many sets on the market to help you decide what bands would be right for you.

Comparing Which Bands Are Practical For You

This will depend on what type of exercise you like, which you feel more comfortable, your goals, your strength level or whether or not you are recovering from an injury.

There are two main types:

Loop and Tube.

[There are many variables that you can check out here.] But, these are most common.

  • Loop bands:

Fit Loop and Therapy Bands.

These bands look exactly as they sound, they are like large rubber bands.

These are the kind that I’ve grown close to, as they are typically used for physical rehabilitation after an injury, or activities where stretching is involved, like yoga, pilates, or dancing.

Naturally, I dig these, and if you are injured or like any of the former activities, they can help you strengthen and get a deeper stretch!

Below Is An Awesome Portfolio of Loop Bands!

Fully Stocked Bar @crossfit323 ?? #BandsThatMakeEmDance #ResistanceBands Small Victory For Us ?? Please Indulge

A post shared by CROSSFIT 323 (@crossfit323) on

Tube bands:

  • Compact
  • Fit Tube
  • Ring
  • Figure 8 Bands

These bands have attachments on the ends for straps or handles, which makes them optimal for strength training, especially for upper body and legs.

Quick & Easy Tube Band Exercise Demonstration:

How To Easily Dissect Bold Colored Resistance Bands:

And figure out which is right for you…

It’s simple:

They are colored coded by resistance – “weight”.

Going by color, typically the darker the more resistance.

For example with my WOD Fitters set here:

WOD Fitters Resistance Band

You can also check out their website here to view their recommendation chart.

My set above starts with the red > black > purple > green (not pictured is the blue – not needed in my case)

Set of 4 Bands:

  • Red: 10 – 35 lbs. (what you’ll probably use mostly)
  • Black: 30 – 60 lbs.
  • Purple: 40 – 80 lbs.
  • Green: 50 – 125 lbs.

Like a regular rubber band, the resistance increases as the band is stretched further (and it’s harder if it weighs more).

Understand that the weight stated on any set you go with is variable. Meaning, it’s determined by either stepping in the center of the band or pulling from the anchor.

If you are new to these, starting out with a low resistance would be advisable, and then work your way to heavier resistance as you get stronger. (obviously)

If you’re unsure, the weight of dumbbells that you would normally (or can easily lift) use is a good indicator of where you should start.

Be careful with these, you can hurt yourself if you start to think your wonder woman or Superman. They will move your limbs where they want if you don’t keep TENSE and in control.

Geek Mode: 
From the Bodylastics website, there was a study conducted by Dr. Jim Stoppani, a fitness expert with a Ph.D. in physiology, comparing your free weights to resistance bands.
Jim’s study concludes with this statement:

“A program using elastic tubing resistance can provide similar benefits to a program that uses free-weight resistance, such as increased muscle group strength, increase muscle tone and size and decreased body fat. In addition, a program that uses elastic tubing resistance can also provide benefits that are not offered by free-weight resistance programs, such as more functional strength, better injury prevention, greater ability to change muscle emphasis during exercises, greater muscle power development and easier use.”

The point is, you’re getting resistance in push/pull or any direction for that matter, for your ROM (range of motion).
The result?
You are able to mimic real life movements when you practice/train using bands. Allowing your muscles to adapt to your everyday activities/hobbies or just being with your kids!
The more controlled tension (key to strength), the more strength you build.

Tough Rubber: Basic Sampler Of Band Material

Because you will be doing a lot of stretching and strength training, you want to make sure that the material of the resistance bands is durable (I’ve definitely broken a few myself).

Latex is the most common material, especially for therapy bands. (I started here until I healed up my shoulder from trying think I was 25 again doing inverted rows.)

If you’re allergic to latex, search for non-latex resistance bands, as there are alternatives!

Bottom Line: Top 5 Best Resistance Bands Sets We Found


Let’s Dive In:

1. Black Mountain Products Resistance Band Set

Black Mountain Products are a family-owned fitness equipment company that takes pride in providing reliable products made from high-quality materials. (did you enjoy that cheesy sales company line)

Anyway:

One of their best products is their resistance band sets.

Having garnered more than 6,000 positive customer reviews on Amazon, it’s easy to see why these bands top this list.

Not only do you get multiple bands with this set, made from heavy-duty synthetic rubber with varying resistance levels that are color-coded, but the set comes with a lot of accessories as well.

All of the bands feature a metal clipping system that allows attachments to ankle straps or soft grip handles (this is great for legs and arm workouts).

How long are Black Mountain resistance bands?

They are 48 inches long!

Additionally:

You get two foam cushion handles, an exercise chart, starter guide, ankle strap, door anchor, and a bag to carry it all in!

Plus, this set is backed by a lifetime warranty. Overall, it’s a pretty sweet deal for anyone, from amateurs to professionals.

2. Bodylastics Resistance Bands Set


Bodylastics
have been in business since 1943!

My set of choice:

Their resistance bands are made of high quality materials, which have only improved continuously since their release way back when…

Natural Rubber:

Unlike regular bands that are made from latex, these bands are made from superior quality Malaysian latex.

Get this:

They have a strong braided core that helps prevents the outer latex material from stretching beyond its capability.

This patented 2-layer design is known as “Snap Guard,” and makes these an ideal band set for those who might be afraid of wearing their set down.

Continuous Dipped Malaysian Latex

Each band set comes with 5 color-coded bands of varying resistances.

Perhaps the best thing about these bands is that you can stack them for added resistance (quite like the Black Mountain!).

If you stack all of the bands together, you will achieve a total resistance of 96 pounds.

In addition to the bands, you also receive a few goodies with the set:

    • Heavy-duty plastic handles with sweat-resistant grips
    • A pair of soft-touch nylon ankle straps for varied leg exercises
  • An anywhere anchor and door anchor. (This means you can take your workout anywhere you go!)


3.
Tribe 11pc Resistance Band Set

If you are looking for the ultimate way to challenge and strengthen your muscles, Tribe has got you covered.

Look:

Their 11 pc set makes losing weight and adding muscle easier than ever before. (well, much like the previous band sets)

All of the eleven bands are color-coded and have varying resistances (like most of these sets do). You can stack them to customize your routine and choose the preferred weight.

Let me say this straight:

The huge difference with these bands is the cost. You will get what you pay for. I personally haven’t used these but get what you can afford and just get moving!

But hang on a minute:

The bands are made from extra thick, high grade silicone that’s resistant to drying out, snapping or any other kind of deformation.

In addition to the resistance bands, this set also comes with a few useful accessories:

    • Ankle straps for better grip and adding strength to your motions
    • Two soft-grip handles
  • One door anchor and a carrying bag for travels

This set is offered with a 100% money back guarantee, and like other sets on this list, it’s offered with a complimentary fitness guide to get you started. So, go get started!

4. Master of Muscle 11 pc. Resistance Band Set


Master of Muscle uses anti-snap resistance band tube technology that incorporates a double layer of latex for maximum resistance. (not bad for a low cost beginner set!)

They come in:

  • 5 lbs.
  • 10 lbs.
  •  15 lbs.
  • 20 lbs.
  • 25 lbs.
  • Combined will create resistance levels of 5 – 75 lbs.

This set is well accessorized and comes with a few other goodies aside from the bands:

  • two cushioned foam handles with a comfortable grip.
  • The ankle straps provide better grip and add strength to motions.
  • the set comes with a carrying bag.
  • door anchor as well as an ebook with more than 20 “body smash” workouts.

But beware:

I read that many people were having issues with their most used bands snapping at around the 7-10 month mark with heavy use.

5. Sport2People Loop Bands Set

With a reputation for being one of the best resistance bands for building muscle while being eco-friendly, the Sport2People is ideal for beginners or professionals, and especially for those who are recovering from an injury, or interested in fitness programs like Yoga or Pilates.

The set comes with 5 bands of varying resistances:

  1. X-light
  2. Light
  3. Medium
  4. Heavy
  5. X- heavy

Each of the resistance levels is color-coded, making it easy for you to tell them apart.

Like tube bands, you can stack them to achieve a higher resistance level.

Good news:

The company promises to reimburse or replace the product should you experience a problem like loss of elasticity or wear and tear.

Plus, these bands have been tested and stretched to the maximum to ensure durability and strength.

Just note:

These bands are mainly for beginners or if you are coming from an injury.

I read the reviews that the x-heavy wasn’t that hard to stretch, the bands are a bit thin and they tend to roll up on you if you decide to use them around your legs for lunges and such.

So What Does All This Mean?

If you’re looking to add new “equipment” to your home gyming workout routine, consider adding resistance bands to change things up.

Why?

They are compatible, travel-friendly, and versatile. making them a great choice for anyone looking to gain strength without purchasing heavy dumbbells. or anyone looking to increase flexibility or recover from an injury.

Which makes these a great choice for anyone looking to gain raw strength without purchasing heavy dumbbells (something you just don’t need).

And great for anyone looking to increase flexibility or recover from an injury.

If you’re wanting to build muscle, start with the Black Mountain Products set (remember, there’s a lifetime warranty, so go you!).

Though, if you are recovering from an injury or wanting to focus on flexibility, I’d recommend the Sport2People set.

Regardless, start resisting, your body will thank you!

“Super set sum up”: Best Resistance bands for the Average Joe /Jane /Beginner /Parent… You!

  1. Black Mountain Resistance Band Set (Budget/Beginner)
  2. Bodylastics Anti-Snap Resistance Band Set (Budget/Beginner)
  3. Resistance Band Set (Athletic Series 11 pc.)
  4. Master of Muscle Shred Bands (Anit-Snap/Budget)
  5. Sport2People Resistance Bands (Physical Therapy/Budget)

This is the point where you “do something”.

Here’s how ridiculously easy it is to get moving using any of these types of resistance bands.

If you would like my favorite video for a short, beginner full-body training then view the video below.

Any questions? Don’t worry, we’ve got answers. Dig in and enjoy.

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